As a Boardmember for the Tustin Area Council for Fine Arts (TACFA), I have admired the many creative ways in which people are using art to connect with each other, express gratitude, inspire, and cope during this period of social distancing and uncertainty. 

From making Tik-Tok videos to creating rainbow chalk art, and from Zoom-streaming Hamilton cast reunions to serenading neighbors from our balconies and driveways, these creative expressions lift us up, make us smile, and remind us of our shared humanity. Art shines a light on darkness, feeds our souls, and powerfully lets us know we are not alone in a way that words and logic cannot.

That’s why I support the arts as a critical component of education and why I’m excited to announce that TACFA is launching COVER UP TUSTIN (check out the flyer below) It’s a contest to not only showcase the unique and creative face masks people have made, but also the spirit of our community that has so generously given masks to others.

Just take a photo of you or your family in your masks, submit the photo to , TACFA Instagram or TACFA Facebook before midnight each Thursday in May starting on May 7th and check the following Monday to see if you win! There are three categories: most creative, most inspiring, and most funny. This contest will be judged weekly and will run throughout May. Of course, everyone who participates is a winner for wearing a mask, doing what you can to protect yourselves and the community, and sharing your talents with others.

Lastly, this Tuesday, May 5th, is #GivingTuesdayNow, a worldwide movement to support non-profits in the arts such as TACFA and also those giving much-needed physical assistance for PPE, food, shelter, and protection from violence. The COVID-19 crisis has hit the non-profit community at just the time that they are needed most. Support can come in all forms, not only money. Think creatively. Every act of generosity counts and everyone has something to give.

Stay healthy, everyone. We’re all in this together.
All my Best,
Allyson Damikolas